Pratibha Sofat Pandey tells you how!
I’m not new to being asked for book suggestions for friends and family , and sometimes even strangers I talk to on Twitter or Facebook. Based on some of the books read in past or on my current mood, I can fairly guess the likes and dislikes of a person. But off late a different kind of question has started bothering me. How and where do you begin reading if you have never done so before ? More challenging is to answer it for people who confess that they were put off from reading by certain books. I take it as a personal task to make the person read and return to reading happily ever after sort of way ( Am obsessed like that.) So over the last few months of hit and trial , these are some of the suggestions / ways that can help non readers and readers alike –
Catch them young
If you see kids / younger generation not into reading, please initiate as soon as possible. I tell it to all new parents and ones with school going kids to begin reading out books to the kids so they can catch this habit from the beginning. Monitor the books the kids read and spend time together reading.
Favorite movie plot
It took me quite some weeks to come up with this experiment. So there are as many movies as there are books. And the choices more or less of the genre will overlap. For non readers , if you can correctly sort the movie/ tv series choice you can map the book suggestions too. I have seen about 80 percent success in following this till the person is willing to diversify.
There are certain set of ideas / topics I will never be a party to discussing or hearing. The same ones I never read either. Similar way , what interests a person will influence the kind of books he / she will like to read and finish soon. ( Please do not suggest more work related books to some people. They need to chill out outside office at least )
Short story collection
It is the safest bet when it comes to gifting or suggesting to others. On an average , there will be 2- 3 stories at least that the reader will love. Which for me is a step ahead for the non readers. Based on the choice of stories, more book suggestions can be listed. Story collections also do not pose the challenge to be finished. If you leave the book in between , there is no sense of loss or restlessness.
KISS: Keep It Short and Simple
The books you suggest should be short (200-300 pages ), devoid of flowery language,simple to understand. Whether it is 25English or Hindi, some books turn even me off by over complicated language. A simple writing style does not turn the reader away.
These have helped me pass reading to quite a few people successfully. It even amazes me, the way some of them 25 finished books and went to read better and more as the books opened their minds to the new possibilities and worlds.
This world book day, I would want to pass this knowledge on and hope it helps some of you to read more, read well and keep passing this love ahead.